Veld fire delays Cape Town trains

2017-01-05 15:16
 (File, Duncan Alfreds, News24)

(File, Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Cape Town – Trains in Cape Town were running more than an hour late after a veld fire damaged the wiring that regulates signals, Metrorail confirmed on Thursday.

All lines were affected.

The veld fire that caused the damage broke out around 09:30, between Woodstock and Cape Town. The cause of the fire was currently unknown.

Metrorail regional spokesperson Riana Scott told News24 that the affected signals had the same function as traffic lights at intersections.

When these signals were down, the trains needed to be authorised manually.

"It is a time-consuming, but safe, alternative until the automated signalling is restored. This is a similar principle to a person manually directing traffic with signs saying 'stop' and 'go' during road works," said Scott.

Metrorail was still waiting to find out how bad the damage was.

"I’m unable to say exactly how long it will take to repair. Technicians are working hard to restore full functionality before the afternoon peak," Scott said.

The damages to the wiring as a result of a veld fire comes just a day after News24 reported that wildfires in Somerset West had damaged the railway tracks next to the Boskloof residential estate.

It was not immediately clear how this damage would affect train operations.

Read more on:    metrorail  |  cape town  |  fires  |  transport

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